Why work with Robert?

If any of these five questions hit home, then keep reading:

  • “We’ve lost our mojo, our purpose and direction. We need some red hot ginger!”
  • “We’ve got stuck. Flat sales and profits. Eyes in the headlights. We don’t know where to go next.”
  • “How can we continue to design, build and sell a best-in-class, best-selling product for the UK’s business market?”
  • “How can we run a board that actually adds real, significant value to the business?”
  • “How should we approach this new set of countries? What should we sell to whom and how and when?”

Robert’s consultancy clients typically see business profitability grow by 30% as a result of working together. This year and next year.

His client list of known (and less well-known) success stories speaks for itself; their testimonials pay tribute to the achievements and results of working together. He is one of few consultants who can blend business experience, intellectual rigour, common sense and original thinking to solve client issues.

“Robert Craven is not the ‘hard sell’, but what he does is tell you how it is. More importantly, it’s all common sense. His inspiration gave me the motivation I needed as my company was on its knees and I was days away from being bust. Now I own four businesses and work 2 days a week…”
– Richard Vanbergen, Flex-Able Group

Download a free mini version of Robert’s book ‘Customer is King’, with a foreword by Sir Richard Branson here.

Robert is Managing Director of The Directors’ Centre – the consultancy for growing businesses. The team of been-there-done-it consultants and entrepreneurs work with a select number of directors to grow and develop the client’s business for the long-term. The focus is on delivering results. Recent clients include FTSE 100 as well as Fast Growth 100 businesses, from Barclays to Bigham’s.

Author of six business books, Robert’s work has been acted upon by thousands. The real Robert Craven impact takes place when clients work with Robert, one-to-one.


Recent clients include: BlackBerry, Barclays, Bigham’s, BookTrust, Fortis, Fabulous Baking Brothers (Hobbs House Bakery), Mitie, Matra Datavision, Adventure Bars, FD Centre.

Clients approach Robert with a variety of challenges:

  • Service firms seeking growth
  • Frustrating sales or marketing performance
  • Trying to access the SME market
  • General feelings of under-performance in a rapidly changing world.


“Upon conclusion of our first Skype call, Robert set me 2 goals. The first was completed in 90 minutes, and the second; a £30,000 sale; took me 7 days. Note to self – Must try harder, but then again I have Robert to keep me focused and on track.”
Fraser J. Hay, Founder | Grow Your Business® Club – Sept ’14

Robert’s particular skillset is helping boards to create strategies and dashboards that will be delivered on. Decisions, actions, results and accountability are at the core of his activity.

Key issues are around business strategy:

  • Putting the customer at the centre of the business
  • Creating the sales and marketing systems
  • Processes to deliver increased profitability.


Client Case Studies

Food Manufacturer
Robert designed and led strategy awaydays for the board. He arrived when turnover was nudging £3m. Working principally with the managing director, a series of fundamental strategic and branding decisions have seen the business to grow to £30m with 350 staff.

Accounting Practice
The ten senior partners employed Robert to help alleviate or somehow short-cut the hard work associated with growing the practice. Replacing old random ways with a more sophisticated sales and marketing machine has seen client numbers increase 150%.

Proper Organic Chocolate
Even a great history, great provenance, great product, great story, and brilliant product needs to be packaged properly. Trade-offs need to be made as you cannot do everything. Award-winning product needs a strategy to launch especially when Europe is the target in your sights.

Auction House
A successful provincial auction house was looking for the next stage. A focus on increasing the number of events, the average lot size, and the fees charged have seen profit rise significantly (confidential) and the auction house has been able to attract bigger and better lots. Staff numbers have contracted and sales volumes have increased. Now attracting national attention especially from the media, the partners are buying the buildings they once rented.

Web Design Agency
After suffering rather large bad debt due to a client going under and losing 2 major clients in the space of a week, Robert helped the owner re-evaluate, take control of his time and implement key actions which transformed his business, morale, attitude and results.

IT/Telecomms Systems Supplier
With no systems, processes or senior management team in place to run this 60-person business, the managing director was spending more time in than on the business. Recruiting a new senior team, a board process was put in place creating a turnkey business that would consistently grow sustainably and steadily. This transforming the firm into a business fit for sale.

Group of Fitness Centres
Faced with a business model that wasn’t entirely sustainable, Robert sat with the directors to design and refinance the business so that a new model could be rolled out for the 8-centre business. Re-named and re-branded the business entered into a joint venture to roll-out the new customer-obsessed venture with its own brand new, prestige purpose-built site.

A UK Big Four bank wanted to transform sales results by changing the staff culture: Robert designed the whole strategy and delivery process for every UK business banking employee. Market share of the business banking market increased from 17% to 21% of 4 million potential customers. The bank attributes a significant part of its increased sales and profitability to Robert’s ‘Understanding Small Business’ Programme.

An international banking conglomerate was assisted to design and deliver its European business banking offering, starting with the design of the segmented product offerings, then the training of bank staff and finishing with the official launch of UK bank offices

Chain of cocktail bars
Working with the directors, the size, shape and profitability of the estate of bars has been changed and redeveloped. As a consequence, significantly improved sales and profits have been delivered. The business is now opening a new bar every six months and has just launched a pilot franchise-ready food outlet.

Baking Firm
A fifth generation bakers felt the pressure of escalating flour costs and crashing competitor prices. The decision was made to ‘do what Rick Stein did for fish!’ A rebrand, a launch of the UK’s most expensive loaf, the launch of bread available online, and the ensuing launch of a TV cook brand and recipe book saw the company taken onto the global stage courtesy of the Discovery Channel.